Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Rajah, Over and Out...

Curry di Maiale alle Mandorle
Pork and Almond Curry

Time for something spicy and heart-warming on this cold, wet, July evening here in Frankfurt... it just goes on and on! My previous post, with the Granita, was a pure act of defiance, in the face of the coldest most pathetic Summer in history! But this evening, I just threw in the towel and made myself something to give me some exotic and spicy comfort from a far-off land...

This of course is not a traditional Indian curry, it is MY interpretation of such, but it is created in a very similar fashion. I began by dry toasting my spices in my frying pan, and the spices I used were coriander seeds, a cardamom pod, a little vanilla, a little star anise, pepper and fennel seeds. As soon as they begin to give off a fine, roasted aroma, transfer them to a mortar and pestle and grind them into a paste with a little garlic, ginger, coriander stalks and shallots. Add a good pinch of sugar, a little salt and chili to taste.

Cut the pork into bite-sized strips and the carrots and celery in diagonal slices, and fry them at a relatively high heat in a pat of ghee or clarified butter. As soon as the pork changes color and turns white, add the spice paste, a handful of raisins and the almonds. Sprinkle with coconut flakes and keep stirring, then de glaze the pan with a splash of white wine.

As I said- this is not a traditional Indian dish by any means... but it is delicious and easy and that's already two good things it has going for it!

Next, add a good tablespoon of turmeric, a teaspoon of Madras curry powder, a little water and turn down the heat. At this point you can add a generous amount of finely chopped coriander leaves. Some people do not like the flavor of coriander- in which case, you can simply replace them with chopped parsley.

The meat should be nice and tender by now, so around 5 minutes before you are ready to serve, add a couple of sliced shallots- I think they taste much sweeter cooked this way at the end, they retain a little bite and add a nice bit of savory freshness to the curry.

Now turn the heat down to a low simmer and gently stir in some plain yogurt. Make sure the heat is reduced so that it doesn't curdle. Add a squeeze of lemon juice and a drizzle of almond oil and serve with a plain Basmati rice. And if it is as cold where you are as it is here... add a little extra chili for a little extra heat!

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